Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study

A consortium of Townsville businesses, led by national engineering and development consultants, SMEC, has been chosen to undertake a detailed feasibility study for the proposed Hells Gates Dam.

The group, including local engineering firm Premise, consulting firm Brazier Motti and economic consultants AEC, have commenced the 12-month study due to be completed in early 2018.

The $2.2 million study is funded under the Federal Government’s National Water Infrastructure Development Fund and is project managed by Townsville Enterprise. The study will consolidate and expand on existing research and analysis and will determine if the Dam, located on the Burdekin River north-west of Townsville, is feasible on an engineering, environmental and economic basis.

Project scope of work includes: water resource and cropping assessments; agronomy and field studies on soil conditions; concept engineering of Hells Gates Dam, Big Rocks Weir, irrigation infrastructure, power supply, road and associated infrastructure and water delivery to the City of Townsville; ecology and environmental assessment; stakeholder relations; and economic assessments.

The Hells Gates Dam project on the Upper Burdekin River would provide opportunities to significantly increase the agricultural production of the North, establishing up to 100,000 hectares of irrigated agricultural land.

For further details on the Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study, please contact the Project Manager, David Lynch, on 0408 190 751 / davidl@empowernorth.com.au


Advocacy Timeline 
  • May 2016 - Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources announced an election commitment of $2.2M under the national Water Infrastructure Development Fund (NWIDF) to assess the proposed Hells Gates Dam
  • September 2016 - Townsville Enterprise submitted an Expression of Interest (EOI) under the NWIDF to conduct a study into the feasibility of a dam at Hells Gates
  • 25 October 2016 - State Government announces establishment of financial mechanism structures to conduct feasibility studies
  • November 2016 - Federal Department of Agriculture and Water Resources accepted Townsville Enterprises EOI
  • 8 December 2016 - Expressions of interest opened by Townsville Enterprise for a leader of the project
  • 15 May 2017 - SMEC chosen to lead Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study
  • March 2018 - Full feasibility study to be submitted

"Great to host @newscomauHQ journalist @emmareyn for the weekend covering a major event in our region - @PBR Iron Co… https://t.co/1xcchW4ZBd"

07:59 PM Nov 20th @TSVEnterprise